The second book on Mark Zuckerberg’s 2015 reading list is Steven Pinker‘s The Better Angels of Our Nature (Viking/Penguin). “It’s a timely book about how and why violence has steadily decreased throughout our history, and how we can continue this trend,” Zuckerberg writes. At 832 pages, Zuckerberg and Facebook friends will take four weeks to read the book instead of two — but he will “add a third book in two weeks that will be a shorter read to complement this.”
At Wiley, Mark Allin is being promoted to executive vice president, chief operating officer, effective May 1, with strategic and operational responsibility for Wiley’s three businesses. Allin has been evp of professional development (which includes their remaining trade books business), and joined Wiley in 2000 after it acquired Capstone, which he co-founded. CEO Steve Smith says in the announcement, “Mark has quickly and thoughtfully reshaped and reinvigorated the former Professional Trade business in response to rapidly changing market conditions” and “he has been the primary architect of Wiley’s strategy to refocus the business on the career lifecycle needs of our professional customers.”
Karyn Marcus will rejoin Simon & Schuster as senior editor on February 2. (She worked there from 2011 to 2013, before leaving to work for the NYC school system.)
Michael Siglain has been named director, creative franchise at Lucasfilm Publishing. In this new role, he will be responsible for strategically planning and directing a licensed and vertical publishing program for Lucasfilm properties on a global level, and will lead the coordination and communication with the Lucasfilm story team, Disney Publishing Worldwide, and third party publishers. Reporting to him are editorial staff Jonathan Rinzler, Jennifer Heddle, Frank Parisi, and Samantha Holland, editorial assistant. Siglain, who has been executive editor at Disney Book Group, will relocate to the Lucasfilm offices in San Francisco.
Viniita Moran will join Chronicle Books as web manager on February 9. Previously she was online store assistant manager at SFMOMA.
Publishing Trends reports that Tim Ditlow has joined kids ebook subscription company Epic! as VP of Content. He was most recently associate publisher, children’s audio at Amazon.
Salem West has joined Bywater Books as publisher. Most recently she wrote LGBT review blog The Rainbow Reader. Ann McMan has been named director of creative services.
In the UK, Anna Rafferty is joining Pottermore as director of product, creative and content.
Simon Master, 70, former deputy group chairman at Random House UK, died January 16 while on vacation with his wife.
Alice K. Turner, 75, fiction editor at Playboy from 1980 through 2000, died January 17 from complications of pneumonia.
Anne McDermid and Associates has appointed The Cooke Agency International to handle the agency’s translation and UK rights, effective immediately.
In store news, Manhattan’s Complete Traveller Antiquarian Bookstore on Madison Avenue is closing Monday, as owners Harriet and Arnold Greenberg are ready to retire.